Thomas Astley – Former Business Admin Level 2 Apprentice
An apprenticeship is a great opportunity to learn foundation skills for my career. It was an opportunity to find out what I wanted to do and make steps toward my future, one being a business degree. The apprenticeship was the starting block for my career path, now working for the NHS. During the apprenticeship, I received lots of support from the team at Runshaw. I didn’t feel abandoned as an apprentice and it was a great tool to progress my career.
Best Thing About Being an Apprentice?
Knowing that I would get the skills and progression leading to a permanent role. After earning a low wage for the first part of my apprenticeship, my wage increased, and I was earning good money for a 19-year-old, full-time hours with a steady income. It is important to remember that once you progress into a full-time job, your wage will improve. An apprenticeship was a great starting block for my career, it gave me the skills I needed to progress.
Advice to a New Apprentice?
Get the most out of your apprenticeship. The skills you learn in combination with the experience on the job and your qualification will move you forward in your chosen career. An apprenticeship shows employers demonstrable knowledge, skills and experience in your chosen field.
My Route to my Current Job
I started off in a local engineering firm doing basic admin tasks and then moved to a supported living care company where I expanded my experience into recruitment and HR admin. I worked for this company for a few years also gaining experience in rotas and payroll. Toward the end of my degree, I started in the NHS Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit as an admin assistant within the corporate finance team, I worked on an audit in a niche area and also supported the contracting team. I was involved with reworking performance reports for the board which then received positive feedback from NHS England. I also supported with early work on automation, finding ways to auto-generate some reports, documents and information. I have worked in the health service for just over 3 years now, and it is a brilliant organisation to work for.
I decided that in the long term, I wanted to work in operational management, so I pursued a role in a hospital as personal assistant to surgical division management, this role exposed me to some of the inner functioning of acute services and helped me to identify the skills and experiences I needed to further my career progression.
Leading to my current role as an Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) MDT co-ordinator, based at Royal Preston Hospital where I provide admin support to the clinical team, virtually following patients through pathways of care and reducing delays. I am supporting a team across 3 NHS Trusts in setting up and developing new regional service that will have a positive impact on the patients with ILD.
I am undertaking a master’s degree in law, as I think this will be useful in future roles in operational management. Eventually I would like to be an Operations Director in the NHS, ambitious! But I am committed and nothing will stop me reaching my goal!